How is emergency dentistry different to normal dentistry?
Much the same as commonplace accidents or injuries, dental emergencies can happen anywhere and at any time, requiring immediate attention from a healthcare professional – something that a regular check-up won’t provide. Emergency dental clinics are open 24 hours a day, every day of the year – even Christmas Day in most cases, treating any problems with the teeth, mouth, and jaw. An emergency dental surgery is run in a different way to the normal dentists office you might be used to, that’s because it is designed to treat patients with much more pressing issues than a brace fitting or tooth whitening procedure. Emergency dentists won’t give appointments for a general dentistry consultation after 11pm and they are not going to assess you for orthodontic treatments at night, they only accept patients who are in pain and need help immediately.
Not only are these types of institutes becoming a necessity because of their prompt service, but they also take a great deal of pressure off nearby hospitals, who are less likely to be capable of dealing with specific dental problems such as root canals or extractions. It’s comforting to know that there is someone who can help within hours if you suffer an accident, any time, day or night.
When should I give the emergency dentist a call?
First of all, a mild tooth ache is no cause for alarm, it could just be a reaction to an extreme temperature, so don’t panic and think you should head to the emergency dentist right away – although you should certainly get it checked out if it persists. Temporary aches and pains are sometimes just a symptom of what we’re eating, the weather, our general health, etc, and will only last a few minutes or so, but ongoing discomfort, particularly regular bouts of throbbing toothache, should warrant a visit to your dentist. You can’t ignore niggling pain that won’t go away, your teeth are trying to tell you that something is wrong; it will only get worse if you dismiss it.
Emergency dental appointments are normally taken up with situations much worse than sensitive teeth, and if you are in need of immediate assistance you will almost certainly know about it. Many patients arriving at the emergency dentist have lost or broken a tooth in an accident and have to be seen by a dentist straight away, this can be quite traumatic and cause a lot of pain, it’s lucky that the majority of patients are referred for treatment within twenty-four hours of the injury occurring. If you experience a similar injury, make an appointment straight away, even if the pain dulls after a few hours, there could be significant damage that needs repairing.